Rev. Monsignor Anselm Nwaorgu, Ph.D
Helping someone cross over: The Knightly Duty
Msgr. Anselm Nwaorgu, Ph.D.
I am reminded of a story a friend of mine once told me. It was rush hour on a hot-summer Friday afternoon, on a local road that fed into a major federal highway. Commuters were rushing hoping to beat the traffic headed down the shore. On a cross lane stood a blind man, who because he slept off in the bus, passed his usual stop. Now he was in an unfamiliar territory. He stood there and repetitiously called out: “please someone help me crossover”. People were so tuned into their own needs that they either did not hear the plea of the blind man or they did not care about his call for help. When my friend saw what was going on, he said to the man “Yes, I will help you crossover”. He went on to walk the blind man through the busy street as some motorists honked their horn, out of impatience, as though they couldn’t see the need that was being fulfilled. It took them sometime to cross over to the other side. He then got into another bus with the bind man, and took him to the bus stop that he had missed and which he was familiar with. The blind man was now able to get on his way and continued his journey.
This story reminds me of what Christmas is all about; God coming down to us in human form to help us crossover; to help us crossover from darkness into light; from sin to redemption, from death to resurrection and from condemnation to salvation. The true spirit of Christmas, therefore, lies in helping someone crossover. I am reminded of the story of the man that Christ healed at the pool of Bethesda. For 38 years, this man tried to get to the pool first, so that he could be healed when the water was stirred up, but he never could get there first because of his condition as a cripple; and sadly no one reached out to help him overcome this challenge until Christ ran into him. Life is filled with moments when we need someone or someone needs us to crossover, to beat the odds, to get up and get going again, and to overcome the many challenges that we are forced to face in life. As the saying goes, it takes a village to raise a child. For someone in this world, someone out there, someone who needs to crossover, I am that village.
For decades, the Knights of Columbus have dedicated their time, talent and treasure to helping people crossover; to give hope that tomorrow indeed may be a better day. This is a noble cause we undertake day in day out and we must never stop nor get tired in this effort. As Catholic gentlemen, we find holy moments, moments of grace in making this world a better place for all. Let’s continue to help others crossover; to be that bridge between failure and success, between hopelessness and hopefulness, between despair and being an overcomer, between starvation and having something to eat, between disempowerment and mucho empowerment, etc. We must always bear in mind that the true spirit of Christmas is to be “Emmanuel—God with us” for someone out there. The grace to do this abounds in us and we must continue to call it forth into existence and keep it striving for ages unending. Merry Christmas and a happy New Year.